Eisenmenger Complex
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Pregnancy Issues

Pregnancy is considered to be very high-risk for individuals with Eisenmenger Complex and is to be avoided. Mortality rates for the mother with this disease are as high as 30-50%. If there is a sudden drop in blood pressure or blood loss during pregnancy, sudden death may occur. In addition, there is a heightened risk of premature births, miscarriages, and stillbirths.

After the first trimester, changes in circulation will cause cyanosis (blueness caused by low oxygen saturation in the arterial blood supply) and an increase in the right to left shunting of blood through the ventricular septal defect. These problems will become more serious during labor and may become life-threatening.

If the patient chooses to proceed with pregnancy against medical advice, careful monitoring by health professionals is essential. Minimal activity and bed rest are usually recommended, and treatment with anticoagulants and oxygen therapy may be prescribed. Cesarean section may be selected as the safest form of delivery. Reduced activity and careful monitoring for a couple of weeks after giving birth are necessary to guard against sudden death.

Anyone with congenital heart disease, repaired or non-repaired, should consult with their cardiologist prior to becoming pregnant to review the risks.